After Alexandr Misko gave an amazing performance last week at Acoustic Rooms as a special guest, it was exciting to see what this week would hold. The beauty of an open mic night being you never know exactly what you’re going to see.
The night started with Ryan Dunn from the band Gazelle, who performed a strong triad of songs, turning the volume high for the night with his acoustic guitar and rough vocals.
Next up was singer Kaiori, also accompanied by her acoustic guitar. She opened with a cover of Avicci’s ‘Wake me up’. You could tell that she was a little nervous so hopefully with more time and practice her performance will become stronger.
Elliot Williams performed next, opening with another classic of Joy Devision’s ‘Love will tear us apart’. However, his original songs really showed the room what he was capable of and his talent was clear as he relaxed into songs that were handcrafted by him. His music is available on spotify so definitely worth a look.
Next was a fairly unexpected and unique act called Edi Johnston who stood up with his ukulele and went on to perform three incredibly short, but also incredibly funny songs. He then performed a few longer songs which had the whole room in stitches, one called “did it” based around the cringey realisation that everybody is here because their parents “did it”. He finished with his own version of Ed Sheeran’s ‘Shape of you’ which was altered to voice his love of cakes and was a very clever and original parody. We got the chance to speak to Edi after his performance.
Interview with Edi Johnston
Edi Johnston has had a varied musical and performing career starting with a hip-hop band and ranging into something that sounds similar to “Stomp” but with less dancing. He has ended up with comedy/ukulele mainly due to his children. After listening to their favourite children’s songs on repeat for hours at a time he decided he could do something similar but songs that he actual likes. He said it was great realising that his children were starting to find his songs funny and understanding the lyrics more.
He told us that most of his songs are written within five days as he attends a singing/song-writing group called First Tuesday Songwriting Group which requires a new song to be written for each session and he more often than not leaves his song writing until very close before. His songs are a very similar style to those by Tim Minchin and are very cleverly done.
Being a singing, ukulele playing comedian is quite a niche act and Edi admitted that he struggles to find places to play because comedy nights would only give about five minutes for a set- which is only enough for one song, but equally musicians don’t tend to put acts like him on as supports. Edi wished there were more variety nights in Nottingham to showcase the acts and performers who don’t fit into the usual boxes of music or comedy. He also admitted that he has applied to go onto Britain’s got Talent in the past but was rejected and has no plans to try again.
Edi Johnston is playing at The Library on Saturday 8th December in the afternoon so if you’re interested to hear some of his songs and are up for a good laugh, head down!
Edi Johnston- Photography by Alij Photos
Finally, the night ended with Adam Fixter who covered Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Chains’ as well as Justin Bieber’s ‘Love yourself’ and ended with a couple of Ed Sheeran covers too. Overall the night was a lot quieter than last weeks and ended much earlier too but there were still some talented and unique acts who performed making it another great night at Acoustic Rooms.